02 Oct

A Little More Progress

Today I made great progress on a fairy costume for my daughter. Skirt and wings are done; bodice and gauntlets need to be fitted, but she’s off at a party with a friend, so it will have to wait. Chain mail for my son is blocking.

Yellow Strings

But instead of costume progress, I’ll share last week’s quilt progress. The green and the blue scraps have been joined by yellow scraps. And all the scraps are joined with sprout green and Hawaiian red dirt solids.


I had started sewing the scraps together just to use them up, knowing that sooner or later I’d think of some place to use them. When the idea came to me, it required a more judicious use of scraps, so while I used up a lot of greens, I was left at least half the blue scraps, and I hardly made a dent in the yellow/brown bin.

I’m very pleased with how this quilt is turning out, even if it’s not the scrap-stash buster I has original thought it would be.

19 Jul

Part of the Process

Since I sorted all my scraps (and have been pretty good about putting new ones in the appropriate bins) I have also been slowly sewing the scraps to paper foundations. “String” quilts made from these sort of aggregate bits are pretty popular these days, and I have always been a fan of the scrappy look.

Green Strings

I started with green because I have a plan that uses greens, blues, and yellows. I am happy to report that my green bin is nearly empty! Now I will chip away at the blue bin.

27 Mar

Fliegenpilz III (The Latest Mushroom Quilt)

You know when you can’t decide on something and then you ask for someone’s opinion and then are disappointed if they don’t give the answer you wanted and so “poof” you have your answer?

I was hoping that would happen with my mushroom quilt. But, no. It didn’t. Everyone’s help was equally appealing. After much internal debate with me, myself and I, we decided that, although the Fairy Ring was conceptually awesome, the row of mushrooms better showcased the ‘shrooms, and looked a bit more modern. I resigned myself to buying more fabric and took the plunge to actually purchase backing fabric too (it totally cracked me up that the burgundy with green polka dots that was just perfect ended up being a Kaffe Fasset print!).

I did use a strip to separate the mushrooms from the strips — jumbo red ric-rac! It has the necessary contrast, and just the right whimsy to compliment the mushrooms. I mean really, when you are working with wonky polka dot mushrooms, you can’t take yourself too seriously

I almost convinced myself that I should overdye the strippy side just out of curiosity, but I wimped out and cut a bunch of the strips thinner instead. There was a lot of cutting and re-sewing and cutting and re-sewing. There are some sections that I don’t think are as successful as they could be, but it’s destined to be a utilitarian quilt and at some point, I just wanted it done. I kinda wished the near solid was the larger half, but it was the perfect color (and had groovy flowers on it that picked up on the quilt’s whimsy without being too cute) and the shop had a very limited amount. It’s a print from a Christmas kitty collection a year or two ago, so I didn’t feel like going on a quest for more.

The Fairy Ring still lives, but you can’t really see it in the photos. I quilted an arc about six inches wide with red thread where I had intended the ring to be on the original quilt layout. Inside the ring, I quilted free form circles in green and outside the ring I echoed the strips with parallel lines, also in green. It’s subtle, but it’s there in spirit.

I tried a couple of gadgets on this quilt. A column in the latest Quilter’s Newsletter Magazine made light fun of wearing a toilet paper tube as a necklace to facilitate sewing the binding on a quilt. Sure, it looks ridiculous, but man if it isn’t incredibly helpful! Speaking of binding, this is the first quilt I’ve made with rounded corners. For a softer look, it’s great. I think I make pretty good corners, but I sure didn’t miss them this time around. I also used my new (as of Christmas) laser level square both when I blocked the quilt (before binding) and when I squared up the quilt to be bound. How did I ever live without this? Thank you Nadine for turning me on to this indispensable hardware store find!

07 Nov

Nana’s Table

I never met Nana, at least that I can remember, but there was always mention of her. She was my maternal grandfather’s mom and left some pretty nice stuff with the family when she died (to include a friend who remained part of the family for years, until he, himself died).

Now that we are back in the US and gathering up things we’ve had scattered around (like the furniture and bread maker that were in storage for the last eight years), my aunt reminded me that I was the lucky inheritress of Nana’s sewing table. Awesome aunt that she is, she packed it up in a big box and mailed it to Hawaii, where it arrived a few days ago without mishap.

I have yet to fill it up with yarns and spools and stuff, but I know that will happen soon enough. I’m quite sure it will have a happy home here.

In other news, I’ve been sewing scraps (strings) for the last few days and I’m really happy with the result. Here’s the layout I love, but ultimately didn’t choose because I wanted to do another one even more.

Coincidentally, fellow 12 x12er Brenda has also been working on her own string theory.